Poker Gains Recognition In Universities As A Teaching ToolApril 15, 2010 1:16 pm
The game of poker continues to gain global recognition for its subtle complexities and is now even being studied in Universities as a teaching tool to aid students acquire skills which have applications in general life.
Instrumental in the growing esteem held for the game in academic circles are respected groups such as the Global Poker Strategic Thinking Society (GPSTS), and professors, such as Charles Swayne, who have been promoting the understanding of poker as a means to gain greater insight into other disciplines like physics, political science and mathematics.
For instance, chess was always used by academics for studying warfare but has now been replaced by poker as a more applicable model. As Chicago professor James McManus explains:
“The ways we’ve done battle and business, made art and literature have echoed, and been echoed by, poker’s definitive tactics, as well as its rich lore and history.”
Many top poker players also seem to come from a professionals background, such as Law or Equity Trading, and poker is increasingly being seen as a way of promoting higher level strategic thinking, with the luck element of the game viewed as a more realistic reflection of situations which occur in everyday activities.
Charlotte Law School professor John Kunich explains the connection by stating:
“I teach law, and I think everyone knows that law has an element of precision and some things in common with math and science. But it also has a lot in common with politics and policy and philosophy. There’s a lot of ambiguity, room for creativity, and uncertainties, and (using poker helps) these things resonate with folks.”
Poker has certainly taken some major strides since it was viewed as the pastime of gamblers and card sharks, and despite gaining ground in academic circles it is still likely a while before it gains enough wide spread respectability to be included in any mainstream study at Universities.